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Joined: Nov 2007
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Has anyone used this program? It was mentioned briefly here in 2011, but that was an earlier version.

I'm interested in using it to check beat rates.

Here's the URL btw:

http://www.cc-ast.com/icpianotuner.html

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Not much is disclosed on the webpage about the measurement techniques employed or accuracy of frequency resolution. Do you know who and where this is from?


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Found a reference to it right here, at PS! Something that actually counts beat rates? Sounded interesting.

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I took a quick look for a youtube video and didn't find one. I'd like to see it in action.



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The website is not very helpful.

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No, it's not.

I emailed a request for a copy of the program manual, and I got a timely response saying there was no separate manual - it was integrated into the program. He said the main function was described in the website.


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John Kellner
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Stuck my neck out and purchased it. The manual/help is poorly conceived; it is therefore very, very hard to figure out how to use the program. I've had no luck at all so far. ($50 US $72 Can)

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Hi,
I'm not sure if my comments will be helpful or appropriate to the question, but since other aspiring tuners may be reading this, I'll throw it out there:
In my opinion, counting beats is a waste of time. If you wish to use an EDT, spring for something comprehensive like the Verituner. If you want do do it aurally, do it aurally but don't try to count beats. While I'm not yet an RPT, i do plan on taking the tests this spring, and my aural tuning is now almost entirely within 1 cent. The key is to "memorize" the sound of really just one beating interval: F3 to A3/A4. You don't have to count the actual number of beats, but rather internalize what it SOUNDS like--two different concepts.
After that, setting the major 3rd A3-C#4 is easy: it has to be just a little faster. Do I count it?
No way. But now I'm nailing it consistently. After that, I set F3-D4. Do I count the beats?
No. It just has to be very slightly faster than F-A, and not so fast as A-C#. And all the other beat rates just need to fall in line with what I have already. It all depends on whether you can perceive and control the relative rates. My mentor and I agree: actually attempting to count beats is kooky talk. But then, you have to use multiple checks anyway. I don't JUST tune the F-D relative to the thirds I have, but also check it against 4ths and 5ths (D vs the two As).

I don't suggest I'm yet ready to do fine aural concert turnings. But I'm confident this manner of judging RELATIVE rates will get me past the PTG exam. None of this is really my idea--just following Bill Bremmers advice and tweaking the sequence for my own use.

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sfc - From that post, I can see you are well on your way to passing your RPT !



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Mr.Bremmer has been saying that for years.


"Respond intelligently, even to unintelligent treatment."
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New upgraded version v5.0.0 just out. New features are described in the website,
http://www.cc-ast.com/icpianotuner.html

to mention a few, adjustable frequency resolution, stretch tuning optimization of C4->B4, special beating enhancement, manually selectable pitch, convenient reference pitch marks, pitch tuning tracing history, a ~40 page extensive user manual with string-by-string tuning examples for beginners, quick beating references between strings, etc.

For questions about beat counting, there are three ways to see it instead of hear it,

(1) Watch the sound tracing profile real time (synchronized with your ear) goes from peak to trough and back to peak, which is one beat. The graph shown as of today (11/30/2017) in the website is about 3 beats per second (the division is 1 second);
(2) The program calculates the beating between two played strings at a pitch and shows the results, e.g., C4&G4 has a 3:2 beating at G5 pitch;
(3) watch the frequency difference in a partial frequency graph where two strings has a common pitch (such as G5 in (2) above for C4&G4), where each Hz make one beat. The cent value difference can also be used to calculate the beat, just remember if the frequency is doubled (an octave difference), the same cent at the lower pitch is only make half of the beat at the high pitch.

Some comment about tuning without watching/listening the beating effect,

some tuning software offers a prescription for pitches of all the strings by only asking one play for each string, which overlooks the complexity of pianos. Due to the echo from the environment and the piano itself, the pitch of a string may undergo from being amplified at a cent position to being suppressed at a nearby cent position. Unexpected beatings or voicing will appear from time to time. Not to mention the interference effects among unison strings.

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I think this is the one I downloaded and experimented with a while ago. You probably can search for my comments from then. For what I was interested in, a digital beatrate display, rather than a bar graph, would have been more useful.

As far as the usefulness of beatrates, only one thing is more important when setting or evaluating a temperament: stability. The thing to remember is it is the progression of the beatrates, not any absolute values, that must be striven for. Sure, use an ETD, and then tell me how it's ability in setting a temperament is evaluated. Yep, by listening to the beatrate progressions. laugh laugh laugh


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I like the concept of using beat rates in an electronic tuning system as the arbiter in placing a pitch. After all, it is beats that governs how we perceive a tuning, and at least for me how I implement a tuning.


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Anyone who has the beat rates of whatever they produce, either aurally or electronically read out by a computer will be disappointed in how they do not reflect theoretical numbers. They never do and never will.

I very much appreciate the comments from some who have used my methodology. I've served as an examiner for 26 years, so way back in 2003, I started to try to find the reason why technicians had failed the exams and find solutions to that problem.

I often have people who only tune electronically ask me, "What do you do, count beats?" The answer is, "No, I compare and control them". Sometimes, they say, "I can't hear beats" but most often, if I work with them, even novices, I find that they actually can hear them but do not know what to do with them. Once a person locks into what they are really hearing, they become very perceptive.

The Rapidly Beating Intervals (RBI) are actually the foundation for how the piano sounds; for the music it produces. They occur between the higher harmonics which piano technicians call, "partials" (That is actually an adjective, used as a noun. "Partial tone".) Some people can single out harmonics but many cannot and it is not necessary to do so.

The sound of the RBI is perceived by most people as a resonance. The first piano technology lecturer that clued me into it back in 1979, called it the piano's "vibrato". Listen to the sound of a Major third anywhere in the low midrange and it will sound to you as a vibrato like sound although a true vibrato sound is actually a wavering pitch. What you actually hear are harmonics that are not in tune with each other (and producing rapid beats), even though the sound is pleasing to the ear.

Anyone who claims that they cannot hear beats but can still recognize an out of tune sound from the piano is actually hearing beats. The ability to perceive beats well enough to tune a piano by ear is an acquired skill, to be sure. You have to start somewhere, so as Julie Andrews sang, "Let's start at the beginning. It's the very best place to start". Any person wishing to learn aural piano tuning skills needs to be able to perceive and control the RBI's.


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I am assuming that the ICPT is able to be used in such a way that beat rates can be compared between successive intervals, as with aural tuning, but with the assistance and confirmation that it may provide. As we know, absolute beat rates are of limited value.

Last edited by Chris Leslie; 12/04/17 12:09 AM.

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Bill, Chris, I have to smile. We are all saying very much the same thing. And yet we DO use absolute beatrates, at least at the beginning with RBIs, and often all the time with SBIs. And I am sure others experience what I do when something slips and you know an RBI is off without dong any sort of comparing with others. wink

Originally Posted by Bill Bremmer RPT
...

The Rapidly Beating Intervals (RBI) are actually the foundation for how the piano sounds; for the music it produces. They occur between the higher harmonics which piano technicians call, "partials" (That is actually an adjective, used as a noun. "Partial tone".) ...

Any person wishing to learn aural piano tuning skills needs to be able to perceive and control the RBI's.


Well Bill, of course that is only part of the story. There are many things an aural tuner needs to do, such as stability. But although RBI beatrates are important, just one sour SBI makes a piano sound horrible - a real problem with me and WTs!

Chris, not sure if IC Piano Tuner automatically switches to different intervals as chromatic intervals are played to compare beatrates or not. You may have to play one interval, remember where the bar graph is, choose another, play it, and mentally compare the bar graph readings. Maybe Bill ICPT can tell us.


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And another thing, I play all the major chords in all their possible inversions within the temperament octave as a check. The times when any "stand out" it is the 4th or 5th that sounds wrong, not the 3rds or 6th. Sure, which note in the SBI is in error can then usually be tracked down by listening to the RBI beatrate progressions, but it is not the RBI beatrates themselves that makes the chord sound wrong, but the 4th or 5th being incorrectly tempered.

But then I am a dyed in the wool 4th and 5th tuner. smile


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But to be truly objective on the subject of absolute vs relative RBI beatrates, we would need to know a couple of things. First, how far from theoretical are the RBI beatrates on a typical range of piano with, say, a 4:2 octave. Second, how close can an typical experienced tuner determine an RBI beatrate?

Anybody ever looked at this?


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Yes, there are times when absolute beat speed are judged, such as temporarily at the beginning stages of a temperament setting, or being happy with the degree of roll in an expanded perfect interval.

A possible role of an ICPT could be so an experienced tuner can confirm how close their RBI beat rates and progressions pan out. Remember this is what Kees has been kindly doing for some year now to help forum members. An app or device that any tuner can use at any time could be useful.


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An introduction video for the beat-based tuning with IC Piano Tuner can be accessed from the top of the website,
http://www.cc-ast.com/icpianotuner.html

or use the following link, www.youtube.com/watch?v=O81leupEp4I

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